Garmin Swim

Priced: $149.95 - $150.00 Rated:   - 4 stars out of 5 by 7 reviews.
Garmin Swim
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Garmin Swim -

Before the Garmin Swim, pool training meant that you either had an impeccable knack for counting strokes, or you wore a bulky watch with minimal functionality. However, notice that we said 'before the Garmin Swim.' Now, with the Swim's sleek, low-profile watch design, training is as easy pushing a button and swimming.

Garmin's Swim is the all-in-one training device for lap swimmers. Designed for use in pools of at least 17 meters in length, the Swim is ready to get to work right out out of the box. Simply input the length of your pool, and the Swim will do all of the math for you. With it, you have access to data like lengths, distance, stroke count, calories, pace, and more. And even more impressively, Swim distinguishes your stroke type independently. So, your training doesn't have to stop for adjustment during a medley session. Garmin has even made the Swim capable of gauging your SWOLF score. Your efficiency progress is automatically handled without performing a five step algorithm and long division.

Additionally, Garmin simplified the user-interface of the Swim. It features six exterior buttons, each one accessing a different function of the Swim. The computer's functionalities are easily accessible during your workout. For extra motivation, the watch displays your weekly accumulated distance right underneath the time display.

Once your training is done for the day, transfer your data to Garmin Connect wirelessly via ANT+ technology and an included USB stick. Once there, Garmin Connect charts your progress over time. You have access to a host of detailed metrics, and even better, all of your data is shareable should you be looking for insight from your coach or peers.

The watch uses a standard watch cell battery (CR2032) that's user-replaceable. Additionally, Garmin predicts that you'll get around one year of usage from a single battery. Also, the Swim is water-resistant up to 50 meters, and it's capable of storing around 30 workouts before you dump data off of the watch.

The Garmin Swim is available in the color Aqua and in one size. Each watch comes equipped with a battery pre-installed, Garmin Connect software, and a USB stick for data transfers.


  • Gauge your swimming efficiency with the time and number of strokes required to swim a pool length


  • User-replaceable CR 2032 coin-cell battery offers up to 12 months of power
  • Watch features 12- and 24-hr. time, dual time zones, day/date and a daily alarm
  • The Garmin Swim watch is water-resistant to 50m (165 ft.) and operates in temperatures ranging from 14°F (-10°C) to 122°F (50°C)
  • ANT+ wireless uploads your data to Garmin Connect for accurate analysis, secure storage and easy sharing
  • Advanced features allow you to create timed sets and log drills
Holabird Sports

It's time to stop counting laps and focus on your training. The Garmin Swimâ„¢ will do the math for you so all you have to worry about is making fast turns and slicing through the water. This swimming watch is designed for pool use and tracks distance, pace, stroke count, and more.

Items Included:

Basic Features:

Wireless Features:


Designed for pool swimming, the Garmin Swim watch logs your distance, pace, stroke count and stroke type and features free wireless online analysis, storage and sharing of your data.

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Average Price History: Price History
Review RatingNumber of Reviews
Analog or Digital:Digital
Dimensions:1.875 x 1.75 x 0.375 inches
Exercise log:Yes
Heart rate display:No
OS compatibility:Windows / Mac
Pedometer type:Digital 3-axis accelerometer
Tracks calories burned:Yes
Tracks distance:Yes
Tracks steps:No
User replaceable battery:Yes
Weight:1.5 ounces
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Garmin Swim Reviews:

Positive Reviews:

No longer [mis]counting

I have been a recreational swimmer most of my life and just started lap swimming casually about a year ago. A few months back I decided to start training for a half iron-man triathlon in 2013, so I started making my swim workouts longer and more frequent.

I found that it started getting difficult to keep track of my lap count as my intervals got longer, and this watch entirely solves that problem. It uses an accelerometer to detect your stroke type and when you have turned around in the pool. In addition to this, you must initially set the pool size. Once you've done this, it does a solid job of counting laps and detecting swim stroke accurately. It also tracks time and stroke count, which is nice.

One interesting thing to note is that because it uses an accelerometer to track your stroke and when you turn, it's accuracy reflects your swimming form. When I first got the watch it would overcount my yards by about 20% (an extra 75 - 250 yards on a 1000 yard workout) and detect the wrong stroke type half the time (lots of backstroke and some breaststroke when I only swim freestyle). At first I thought it was defective, but a friend who is a higher level swimmer took it out for a workout and it was 100% accurate (he wants one now, incidentally). Over the subsequent two weeks I worked on improving my stroke and now it is 100% accurate for me as well; so it has made me a better swimmer.

In general it is also a comfortable watch. I prefer a slimmer watch that is lightweight, so I was pleased to find that the Garmin Swim was both thinner and lighter than the Garmin Forerunner 610 watch I've been wearing. I have taken to wearing it as my primary out-of-the-pool watch because of this.

The only downside to this watch is that it can't be used to track open water swimming. However, this is not what this product is designed to do, so it's hardly fair to fault it as some other reviews have done. If you need a watch that can track distance in a strangely shaped pool where you can't figure out your lap length or in open water, you'll need one of the GPS enabled watches like the Garmin 910XT.
CharlesA at REI on 08/08/2012

LOVE this watch

So, since I started swimming again for weight loss, I could never keep up with the laps and pace and became rather spoiled with my forerunner and edge tracking my workouts- I got the swim watch.

My first swim was the start of my learning curve. I have learned it will only track the lengths you are swimming one of the four strokes- so, in turn I now swim my leg laps with a kickboard after I finish my workout with the watch and thats fine for me and is not a dealbreaker either.

There is a bit of mystery of what meters I actually swam when i pause to the next interval as it always seems to surprise me with extra meters. I find there must either be some errors in the algorhytmic computation or a bumpy beginning because I swim the same full, complete stroke the entire length from start to finish and sometimes the watch does not count the meters until after I pause to start a new interval. Again, this is not a deal breaker for me either- it makes me push myself harder than I think I would without it.

I bought this as a birthday present for myself, but its gives me alot in return.
thatlisagirl at REI on 09/09/2012

Very useful but require some patience

This is a very useful training tool. It can be a tad inuccurate: if you have poor stroke technique. Realizing that, it made me pay much more attention to my stroke, and the problem was resolved. Concerning the "inaccuracy" issue: poor hand placement will lead the device to misread the stroke type. Also, if you have issues with maintaining a smooth stroke, the device will add laps. This is not a shortcoming on the device. So rather than solely on the device for lap count, I would recommend looking at the session data once it's uploaded to the Garmin website. A bit frustrating at first, but worth the investment.
There is a lack of clear instruction on Garming parts: especially when it comes to use the drill feature. The watch can not measure kicking drill so it needs to be added manually during a work out (but it can be added during the session). I personnally figured how to use that specific feature at home.
Overal, it's a great training tool.
catwoman at REI on 04/04/2013

Smart Watch

It doesn't really record the distance you swim but just calculate the distance according the pool length you entered. Though it's smart enough to add the length when you touch the wall of the pool. I don't feel the result is accurate so far, maybe because I am still learning how to use it, but it's already a big help for me to finish 500m without pushing the buttom for each lap. This elegant watch is also big enough for reading the numbers in water and dark. I like it.
Jovita at REI on 10/10/2013

easy to set up and use

Just got it and set up was a breeze. Then after using it, I downloaded the information to my computer and found way more information than I could ever use. If you like lots of stats then you will love this.
Very comfortable too.
rmarcusdds at REI on 11/11/2013

Another great Garmin product!

Every so often the watch will record the incorrect swim stroke, so I called Garmin to see if they could manually adjust the error. Unfortunately, they could not make the correction and considering Garmin takes pride in "accuracy" I was a little disappointed.
MarathonDude201 at REI on 08/08/2013

Negative Reviews:

Not a GPS Watch

I should have read up more on this watch before purchasing it. I'm training for my first triathlon and can't always swim in a standard/measured pool. I wanted a watch that would tell me the distance of my workout in shorter pools or open water swims. This watch will not do that. You have to enter the length of the pool prior to beginning your workout so that it can calculate the number of laps and total distance. It is designed specifically for pool swimming so it won't help in an open water swim to determine distance.
AlexRWC at REI on 08/08/2012